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Andor Willer does a handstand on athletic equipment at the beach.

Photograph | Digitized | Photograph Number: 92097

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    Andor Willer does a handstand on athletic equipment at the beach.
    Andor Willer does a handstand on athletic equipment at the beach.


    Andor Willer does a handstand on athletic equipment at the beach.
    Circa 1928 - 1934
    Zagreb, [Croatia] Yugoslavia ?
    Variant Locale
    Photo Credit
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, courtesy of Rina Elisha

    Rights & Restrictions

    Photo Source
    United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
    Copyright: United States Holocaust Memorial Museum
    Provenance: Rina Elisha

    Keywords & Subjects

    Administrative Notes

    Rina Willer (later Elisha) is daughter of Andor and Marta (nee Schlesinger) Willer. Andor was born in Zagreb in 1906, and Marta was born in 1909, also in Croatia. She was the daughter of Benjamin and Else Schlesinger. Andor was the oldest child of Ladoslav and Zlata Willer. They lived in a rural town, Podravska Slatina. They were bakers and manufactured sweets and ice cream. Andor had seven younger siblings: Ella, Drago, Mirko, Herman and Hermina, Rusza and Manci. Andor was an athlete and Zionist. He belonged to Hashomer Hatzair and the Maccabi sports club and participated in Maccabi games in Palestine as a gymnast and fencer. He also served as an officer in the Yugoslav army and later worked as an accountant. Andor and Marta married either 1933 or 1934 and Rina was born in Zagreb in 1936. Father had been in army and was a reserve officer in the late 1930s. On April 6, 1941, the Germany, Hungary and Bulgaria invaded Yugoslavia. Croatian Fascists known as the Ustasa established an independent state, and soon after began rounding up Jews and sending them to concentration camps. Among those arrested were Andor and his siblings. Andor was arrested in April 1941 after being denounced by Rina's nanny. On July 22, 1941 Marta and Rina fled Zagreb together with Marta's parents, Elsa and Benjamin Schlesinger, and took refuge in the city of Spilt (Spoleto), which was under Italian occupation at the time. They remained there in hiding until 1942 when they were discovered and imprisoned in the internment camp Kraljevica (Portore). On June 4, 1943 they were transported to the internment camp on the island Rab where they were incarcerated until the capitulation of Italy, October 1943. Subsequently, they fled to Sanj where they lived in hiding under the most difficult conditions. Eventually they escaped and traveling by night in subzero temperatures, arrived at a place called Otochak. From Otochak they continued to move on and managed to get to the village of Dudkovich and from there to the village of Chiche where they stayed for a while in hiding. On September 19, 1944 they fled to Voynich where they lived in hiding until December 25, 1944. Continuous offensives by the German armies forced them to flee to Voynich. After much hardship they arrived at the city of Glina where they lived in hiding until liberation in May 1945. Andor Willer perished in Jasenovac on December 25, 1944 after years of hard labor. His parents and most of his siblings perished in Auschwitz. Only Manci survived.
    Record last modified:
    2010-08-23 00:00:00
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